David H. Rothman discusses how e-books, collections of electrons, not atoms, come with special advantages. They eliminate physical-shelving costs and are especially useful for blind people and others with special needs. Digital technology can also help multiply the selection of books for residents of small towns as well as large cities with underfunded neighborhood library branches. This technology can likewise drive down the costs of providing best-sellers and help with popularizing authoritative information on key issues such as health and finance.
Not enough library e-books to feed your new gadget properly? Well-stocked national digital library systems could help
On December 31, 2012 more than 100 patrons of the District of Columbia Public Library were lined up electronically for 10 e-book copies of John Grisham’s new novel about the murder of a federal judge. Some 400+ D.C. library users awaited 60 electronic copies of Gillian Flynn’s new book, the best-selling fiction title on the New York Times list. In light of consistent demand across the country, David H. Rothman continues to champion the case for affordable, wide spread access to e-books through public libraries. These institutions continue to struggle with dwindling budgets, increased demand for services and copyright/licensing laws impacting e-book cost and distribution.